26-27 July


Crossing the Barents Sea

Best Explorer is currently crossing the Barents Sea, making its way to Longyearbyen, Svalbard. From there, additional crew members will come on board and the scientific expedition of Polarquest2021 will begin!

The first news we heard from the crew came on 26 July:

“After all these days of bad weather in Northern Norway, and cotton white skies heavy over our heads, the though of Svalbard seems a Caribbean paradise of blue sky.

“While we are crossing the glorious Barents sea, we think on Willem Barentsz, the discoverer of Spitsbergen and after whom this sea is named.

“The Crew is adjusting slowly to the demanding conditions of three watches a day. We are all longing to get to Svalbard soon!”

Unfortunately, weather did not improve. And the next day, Project Leader Paola Catapano wrote:

“Yesterday night the fog was so thick we needed radar. It is scary, although we saw not a single boat, though Kevin spotted one on the radar during his watch

“The sky is still white/grey and no hint of the sun.

“This morning fog dissipated just across the 75th parallel. I am on watch again now. We do this in couples: I am with Mike, and Gianluca, our scientific coordinator, is with the captain.

“Soon we’ll see the southern coasts of Svalbard. My thoughts once again go to Barentsz, who discovered the archipelago and named it Spitsbergen or ‘pointy mountains’ in dutch!”

Wishing you safe travels, Best Explorer. The ground team are looking forward to meeting you here in Longyearbyen!


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